The Problems Of The White Paper

My, how the worm has turned.

Seems like only yesterday that Eric Holder was inveighing against sweeping executive war powers. These were the Bush years, when Holder could readily be found caviling about such odious practices as “secret electronic surveillance against American citizens” and “detain[ing] American citizens without due process of law.” Back then, Holder declared these Bush war crimes so “needlessly abusive and unlawful” that the American people (translation: the Bush-deranged Left) were owed “a reckoning” against the officials who conjured them up.

But once he became attorney general in a Democratic administration, the ever-malleable Mr. Holder decided there was actually no problem killing American citizens without due process of law, based on intelligence gleaned from secret surveillance.

The breathtaking hypocrisy of the Obama Democrats is what screams off the pages of the “white paper” Holder’s Justice Department has served up to support the president’s use of lethal force against U.S. nationals who align with our foreign terrorist enemies. It bears remembering that Holder, like his Gitmo Bar soul mates, once volunteered his services to the enemy. At the time, he was a senior partner at a firm that was among the Lawyer Left’s most eager to provide free legal help to al-Qaeda enemy combatants in their lawsuits against the American people. Holder filed an amicus brief on behalf of Jose Padilla, an American citizen turned al-Qaeda operative who was sent to the United States by Khalid Sheikh Mohamed in 2002 to attempt a post-9/11 “second wave” of mass-murder attacks.

Just so you get the gist of where Holder was coming from, an amicus (or “friend of the court”) brief is not something a lawyer has to file on behalf of a client. Padilla already had other counsel. Holder was a party crasher, gratuitously intervening — exploiting his status as a former Clinton deputy attorney general — to steer the court toward his desired policy.

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